Drawing the Pictures for The Spooky Book

Speedball penFor The Spooky Book I decided to do the illustrations in pen and ink using a Speedball pen like the one pictured at the right. The drawings were all done the same size that they are in the book, about 9 inches tall and 22 inches wide.

Crosshatch example

I played around with a number of different approaches and made a lot of mistakes. (One picture took five tries over a month before I got it right!) Finally, I settled on a crosshatching technique that provided what I felt was the right sort of creepy, old-fashioned flavor the story called for.

In case you don’t know, crosshatching is a process where you create areas of color and tone with many little tiny marks, repeated over and over again. From a distance, the lines blend together and become more like a texture. Here’s the same patch seen from a distance. Can you find it in the picture below?

Spooky Book-vase shadow